Yesterday I ran my first half marathon, and it’s safe to say I am addicted! I’m already looking for my next race. One of my favorite things about racing is the places it can take you. For someone who loves to travel and see new places, it will make every race different and every race as exciting as the first.
My first half was the Dino Half in Vernal, Utah. It is a beautiful run down Dry Fork Canyon and back into town. Just as a short recap, I decided I was going to run this race about a month in advance, which didn’t leave a whole lot of room to get in a half marathon training plan. Well, about a week and a half before my race I was on a 6 mile day, and on my first step out the door I felt a shooting pain go through my right knee. It continued with every step for the next 6 miles. Hindsight, I probably shouldn’t have finished my run that day, I assume it has a lot to do with what came next. That night my knee was swollen about twice it’s normal size and I could barely walk. This continued for the next week and it finally felt better the Friday before race day. So I made the decision that I would run the race, and if I had to, I would take time off and give it the necessary rest afterwards. Words can’t describe how happy I am to have made that decision. I went into the race with a goal to run it in under 2 hours, but I wasn’t going to push it if my knee was really hurting. I am very happy to report that I finished the race in 1:58:02! I was pacing quite a bit ahead of that until mile 11.5. I hit a wall and just couldn’t come back from it. Needless to say, I was a little disappointed when this happened. But hey, it was only my first, I have plenty of races and time to improve. I think the “first race” jitters may have given me a little boost as well. I think I had a smile plastered on my face for the entire first 10 miles!
I think I’ll be staying off of my knee for the next week or so, but lucky for me, I don’t consider mountain biking to be strenuous on the joints. So I’ll still be out and about!
What was your first half (or full!) marathon like?